Maruti Suzuki, the most beloved car brand in India. When the company introduced the Dzire back in 2008, even they didn’t think it will become this phenomenon in India. The Indian’s loved the idea of a Swift with an integrated boot. The aesthetics and dynamics were not perfect in the first generation model. But Maruti followed up with a second generation Dzire which was introduced as a compact sedan to get excise duty benefits. Again history repeated itself as Dzire racked more than 15,000 unit steadily every month. Now Maruti Suzuki officially introduced the third generation Dzire dropping the Swift name tag completely. We test drove the Dzire diesel top end model and here is our review.

Exterior

Before explaining the design, I have to say that the Dzire looks pretty good when seen in person. When I saw the Dzire’s spy-shots and images, it looked just ok but when I saw the car in real, my opinion changed completely. The new black finished front grill with Suzuki logo gives the impression of a wider car. The almond design for headlamps with DRLs and projectors look smart and cheerful.The L-Shaped chrome inserts on the bumper with neatly integrated fog lamps works well. The hood design is low which gives better a better view of the roads. Earlier Dzires, always looked disproportionate when viewed from side, but this changes with new model as boot integration is neat and it doesn’t look like an after thought. And from side angle, Dzire reminds me of Kizashi sedan. The rear gets an LED tail lamp and a chrome strip between tail lamps to give the impression of a wider car. The boot has a small lip which gells well with the design theme. Overall, the new Dzire looks grown up and more matured compared to the previous model.

Interior

The moment you step inside the cabin, we can get a more premium feel thanks to the dashboard design and the black and beige color theme. We were driving the top end ZDi+ model which get wood inserts on the dashboard and on steering wheel. The Dzire steering wheel is one of the best steering wheel I have seen in a budget model. The flat bottom steering just looks absolutely awesome and feels great to hold. The only thing I didn’t like is the wood inserts inside the steering wheel as it takes away the sporty feel. The instrument cluster is also very well laid out with tachometer and speedometer along with all other function displayed on the middle screen. The centre console is angled towards driver for better ergonomics. The 7 inch touch screen unit is the similar one which is offered in other Maruti models. Bluetooth pairing is just a few clicks away along with navigation and other useful features like Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The climate controls are placed below infotainment screen and it’s a familiar unit as found in other Suzuki cars. Even though everything feels well put together, we can spot some cost cutting done with switches for power windows and glove box taken from the previous Dzire. Maruti didn’t increase length much but they carved out more space inside compared to earlier model. The front seats get lots of headroom and knee room. The rear seats are very supportive and the knee room is much better than older model. Maruti provide rear AC vents and arm rest for rear passengers which is a big boon in long distance journeys. The new Dzire get increased boot space at 378 Liters and the shape remains to be same. Maruti has given lots of features of Dzire like push button start, DRLs, projector headlamp, LED tail lamp, touch screen infotainment system and more. The Dzire is available with L, V, Z and Z+.

Drive

Maruti Suzuki Dzire is powered by same 1.3 L Multijet engine from previous model producing 75 BHP of power at 4000 RPM and 190 NM of torque at 2000 RPM. This engine is available with 5 speed manual and AGS. We drove the 5 speed manual variant. Maruti hasn’t made much changes to the engine but still when we drive this Dzire feels different and the reason is the new HEARTACT platform which is derived from Baleno. The new Dzire is upto 105 kgs lighter than outgoing model and this results in better acceleration. In every gear, we have ample amounts of torque for instant acceleration. The engine pulls very strongly and turbo lag is not much evident now. In City driving conditions, we can drive in high gears without knocking and a gentle tap on accelerator pedal gives you good momentum. During our highway runs, the Dzire doesn’t feel out of breath and cruising on triple digit speeds are easy. We can expect real world efficiency of around 25 Kmpl with new Dzire. The Dzire is not known for handling. But the new model has improved a lot. We can carry good speeds but once you start pushing, the tyres starts to loose grip and the chassis doesn’t help much. Maruti is focusing on comfort and not handling with suspension tuning. When we drive through broken roads, big poth holes do filter through but most of them are absorbed very well by the suspension. The steering wheel feels connected but doesn’t weigh in as much when speed increases to inspire confidence. The high speed straight line stability is good. The braking efficiency is good but not great, may be because the Dzire we were driving is brand new. We have to appreciate Maruti for offering ABS with EBD and dual airbags standard in all variants.

Verdict

The Dzire is already a good car to begin with and Maruti improved in almost all areas with the new Dzire. Maruti has taken the compact sedan and made it more premium appealing to customers. The Dzire also gives flexibility to customers with more than 10 variants to choose from. The pricing is slightly towards the premium side but when you consider the equipment level and premium feel, the Dzire is really worth the price. If you are in the market for a compact sedan with premium feel, a long features list and realible engine then the Dzire is for you and at the end of the day it’s a Maruti product so resale value is also not a problem and ownership experience will be top notch with service points in all areas.

Images : Stenny Joseph